The Phillies are riding a three-game winning streak. Chase Utley’s knees haven’t given out yet. Ryan Howard has already hit almost half as many home runs after 10 games as he did in all of 2013. So we’re not inclined to grump about this following news too much … yet. CBS Philly reports:
In the end, the Sixers even sucked at sucking.
They ended their season Wednesday night just as they started it: with a victory over the defending NBA champion Miami Heat. Given that everybody knew going into the season that the plan was to stink up the joint as much as possible, those two wins are … unforgivable? Because they helped give the Sixers only the second-worst record in the NBA this season — which means the even more putrid Milwaukee Bucks now have the best chance of capturing the top pick — and, with it, perhaps a semblance of a future in professional basketball.
Still, we’re not sure this is the worst season in Philly sports history. Yes, it was bad, but everybody knew to expect it. It’s the stomach-punch seasons — where expectations and achievement misalign badly — that should count. And there are lots of contenders for that prize. Here’s a nominee from each of the city’s major remaining pro teams:
Though I think it would be obvious to all right-thinking people, not everyone believes the Phillie Phanatic is the best mascot in all of recorded history. Allow me to disabuse you of your ignorance by making a simple case in six GIFs from last night’s cold Phillies loss.
The particular Phanatic bit I’ll be focusing on happened in the third inning.
As you can see, the Phanatic was harassing a fan in the stands, as he is wont to do. This is my favorite part about the Phanatic: Its whole shtick is to be jerks to fans of the team he is supposedly a phanatic of. This is the kind of irony kids should be learning in school, alongside Shakespeare.
Cliff Lee pitched a complete game, struck out 13 batters and gave up just 1 run on Wednesday night at Citizens Bank Park, but the Phillies were shut out in a 1-0 loss to the Braves. They’re now 6-8, four games back of division-leading Atlanta.
OYO Sportstoys, a company that makes “building-block mini-figures featuring the likenesses of your favorite MLB, NFL, and NHL players,” just published a fun video where it uses its toys to re-create the big moments leading to the Phillies’ 2008 World Series Win. See how well it stacks up to your memory of the day below:
From last night’s 9-6 Atlanta Braves victory over the Phillies comes this animated GIF showing the reactions of Phillies fans to a grand slam by Dan Uggla to win it in the 9th. Read more »
We’re 12 games into the season, and the Phillies are 6-6. In their first homestand of the year, they were swept by the Brewers — who are out to a 10-2 start, the best in baseball — but rebounded to sweep in the Marlins in turn. The Phillies have been outscored by 6 runs, and the team’s no longer a hot ticket: On April 11th, the Phillies drew just 22,483 fans, the lowest since July 31, 2006.
But there are reasons to be optimistic about the 2014 season. While the pitching’s shaky, the offense is humming along: Second in the NL in hitting, first in on-base-percentage, sixth in slugging. And a big reason for that is the work of Chase Utley.
CBS Philly reports: “Sunday marks the 5th anniversary of the death of former Phillies announcer Harry Kalas. A steady stream of fans visited the Harry Kalas statue on the concourse beyond the left field foul pole at Citizens Bank Park to take pictures of their favorite play-by-play guy.”
Last night, I attended a talk at Fleischer Art Memorial about “The Art and Design of Sports Uniforms.” It was done by Peter Capolino, the man who turned Mitchell & Ness form a sporting goods manufacturer into the retro jersey fashion behemoth it is today.
It was pretty cool! Did you know the team didn’t always have a ‘P’ on its cap? Or that baseball jerseys were so baggy because they were wool flannel and would shrink over the course of a season? Well, maybe you did, but I didn’t. What most intrigued me was the above logo, which the Phillies wore on the sleeve of their jerseys in the 1938 season. Though the Phillies wore a blue and yellow jersey to celebrate the tricentennial of the founding of New Sweden and lost 105 games, they did have this patch. Per Sportslogos.net, this patch was once the primary logo of the team!
Last night was a great one for a trip to Citizens Bank Park—especially if you like watching fielding errors and left after the sixth inning, as I did, before the Brewers broke a 4-4 tie by tacking on five unanswered runs to send the Phils to the basement of the NL East. (Consolation: the Mets were waiting for them there.)
But in the crisp-spring-evening department, there could hardly have been a better one for my son’s first outing to an MLB game. And speaking of a well-timed exit, he even scored a foul ball on the way out, from a guy who sure knew how to cheer the heart of a kid proudly wearing the Phils jersey he just got for his birthday. Thanks, guy! My son took that baseball to bed with him. “You can smell the grass stain on it,” he told me.
I sniffed it, agreed, and sort of wished I’d asked him to smell the beer I’d had at the game. Because man, had Victory’s Swing Session Saison confused me.